Category Archives: Tips and Tricks

The 2Cubed Web Design Wexford & Dublin Blog contains blog post content with valuable information such as website tips and tricks to improve your website.

Fix Breadcrumbs Markup

Over the past couple of weeks, we have received mass emails in relation to Breadcrumb markup errors from Google. You may have received a similar email:

What are Breadcrumbs?

A breadcrumb, or a trail is a visual element added to show a user where exactly they are within a website. It also indicates the path within the hierarchy of a site. As Structured Data types are constantly evolving, this information is now targeted by Google while indexing and displayed as a rich result to users on the search results page in order to provide users a richer experience. You can see an example of this along with more information here. There is also now a dedicated ‘Breadcrumbs’ option within Google Search Console highlighting error types and potential fixes.

If breadcrumbs are not enabled on your site but you’ve received the email then there may be a setting within the site or theme causing this. This is where we can help. If you have any query or issue in relation to Breadcrumbs or even just a general query, please contact us.

At 2Cubed Web Design & Development, our expert team is on hand to assist with any questions you may have. In addition, we also offer a number of services to help you grow your online presence. Check out our list of services and our website process – https://2cubed.ie/services/

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Keyword Research

In order to grow your online business, to drive traffic toward your site and achieve set goals, a fundamental area is keyword research. Whether you plan on developing a solid SEO strategy or a PPC campaign, keyword research gives you the option to fully research and think about what your users may search for.

keyword research

What are keywords?

Keywords are essentially the words or terms that you enter into a search engine when looking for an answer or a service. Put yourself in your ideal users’ shoes for a moment and think about the path they should take in order to see your website. Whether you are selling products, providing a service or providing information to users, you’ll see a huge benefit from developing a keyword strategy.

Where do I start?

Start by mapping out some broad terms related to your website. Keep them relevant to your sector and what you do. From here, you can begin to build out more long-tail keywords which are more specific to what you offer. Long-tail keywords are the three or four word terms that accurately describe your product.

For example, take a store selling sporting goods. They would begin with some general but competitive keywords like sporting goodssport shop and so on. From here, narrow it down to more specific items such as hockey equipment Dublin, boys running shoes Kilkenny, Wexford kids GAA shirt etc. By developing and implementing these long-tail keywords in to your website content, you’ll have a much better chance of being found on the search engines. On top of this, more relevant traffic to your website and the chance to convert these users into sales. The long-tail keywords usually have less competition and a higher chance of conversion!

Useful Keyword Planner tools

There are many options online to assist with keyword research. Some free tools are available but may be quite limited. You’ll have far more features and options with some paid tools.

Wordstream – https://www.wordstream.com/keywords

Google Keyword Planner (connected to Adwords) – Keyword Planner

Wordtracker – https://www.wordtracker.com/

By developing a keyword strategy for your website, you’ll give yourself every chance to be successful online. The importance of this can’t be understated. By using some of the keyword tools, you’ll get some fresh ideas for keywords that you may not have considered previously. Taking these terms and implementing them into your blogs, PPC, SEO and on-page content should enhance your online visibility greatly!

At 2Cubed Web Design & Development, we offer a number of options to help you develop and a keyword strategy. In addition, we also offer a number of services to help you grow your online presence. Check out our list of services and our website process – https://2cubed.ie/services/

Contact us today for more information on the services we provide – Contact Us

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5 steps to prepare your website for Brexit

At present, the UK is due to leave the European Union as of 31st October 2019. Even though the vote to leave Brexit was way back in June 2016, much uncertainty remains even at this late point in the process. Learning how to prepare your website for the implications of Brexit should be considered. Firstly, understanding how Brexit will affect your business as a whole is vital. We’ve found some useful articles to help fellow business owners here and herebrexit website ready

 

1. Trade

If you run an e-commerce site, purchase products from the UK or engage in any trade across the EU then you’ll likely suffer from higher prices, longer shipping and custom hold-ups and in turn hiked prices for your customers. It may be useful to contact UK suppliers and providers that you engage in to seek assurances. Back in January, Amazon, the largest marketplace in the UK noted that businesses trading on the platform should prepare in case of a no deal Brexit. This remains a real challenge but while there are many uncertainties, this may present a chance for Irish companies to promote buying Irish. If the expected skyrocketing of prices from the UK comes to fruition then there may be a huge potential to bring customers back shopping locally instead of using Amazon, Ebay and other online platforms.

2. Data Protection

Data protection has been heavily in the limelight in recent years. This is mainly due to the GDPR changes that came into place in May 2018. EU wide regulations were updated to protect user data processed by organisations and many businesses were forced to take action in order to meet these stricter guidelines. With the UK leaving the EU, this may require some further thought especially if you own or run a website and process data to or from the UK. If storing any of this data, using a newsletter service such as Mailchimp or taking payments from UK customers then you may need to consider reviewing and amending your existing processes and terms. You can read more on this on https://www.gov.ie/en/publication/bf5200-data-management/.

3. Currency

Since the Brexit vote was announced, pound sterling has been volatile to say the least. The conversion from € to £ has gone from £1.28 to £1.06 over this period and how it will continue remains unclear. As a website owner and especially if dealing with currency conversions, it’s vital to prepare for a worst case scenario. This PDF can help you prepare in detail.

4. Growth and Expansion

Growing your online business within the UK market again remains unclear but in order to protect your business, preparing for a worst case scenario is advised. Many companies may struggle just to stay afloat after a potentially hard Brexit so future plans to expand in another market will need to be examined in a realistic manner. 

5. Website Security

As GDPR is now a vital area of many websites, a critical component on this is ensuring data stored and processed is fully secure. The implications of a data breach can be catastrophic for businesses. A secure website allows you peace of mind that data held is fully secure and allows you to focus on other key areas such as website sales. The storage of this data should be treated as a potential serious security issue. If you have any questions regarding the website hosting or data storage then please use our contact form to send a message – https://2cubed.ie/contact/

At 2Cubed Web Design & Development, we are on hand to assist you with any required changes to your website which may be impacted as a result of Brexit. In addition, we also offer a number of services to help you grow your online presence. Check out our list of services and our website process – https://2cubed.ie/services/

Contact us today for more information on the services we provide – Contact Us

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Google Shopping

If you own or run an e-commerce store, you may want to consider looking into Google Shopping to help get the most out of your selling experience. Google Shopping is a powerful platform that allows you to display products from your website directly on to the search results page.

Setting up a Google Shopping feed and combining it with Google Adwords, allows you the opportunity to get your products in the faces of users without them having to click through to your website and search for the desired product. Many CMS platforms now support plugins to allow you create the shopping feed directly from the back-end of your website which will save time and hassle. 

Once your product feed has been created, it can be seamlessly integrated into Google Merchant Centre. and from here connected to Google Adwords to develop campaigns. The main benefit of setting this up is an increased level of engagement with online shoppers, increase your click-through rates and a greater chance of new customer acquisition.

Google have really ramped up this feature in 2019 and this is fully expected to continue in the coming years. The prominence placed on these product ads is likely to grow as Google look to consolidate merchant products to compete with the likes of Amazon.

At 2Cubed Web Design & Development, we would be happy to help you with any of the e-commerce needs above, helping you to create and manage product feeds. We offer a number of services to help you grow your online presence. Check out our list of services – https://2cubed.ie/services/

Contact us today for more information on the services we provide – Contact Us

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Google AMP in 2019

Google’s AMP project was launched in 2016 and after a slow start, soon became a common feature across mobile search results. AMP or accelerated mobile pages, is a framework developed by Google to rival Facebooks Instant Articles and the technology allows pages to load almost instantly. Last year, we wrote a post about the importance of AMP – See here. So what has changed in the past year and how important is AMP now? 

Nowadays, online users expect everything instantly. Waiting 10 seconds for a website to load is a big no-no in 2019 so enabling AMP can help enormously in getting traffic into your site while getting ahead of your competitors.

Google have now branched out and added some more features to the AMP framework. At present, it’s possible to create:

  • AMP Websites
  • AMP Stories
  • AMP Ads
  • AMP Email

You can find more information on all of the above and see some case study ‘success stories’ by viewing the AMP resource website – https://amp.dev/

Many sites are now seeing the full benefit of having AMP enabled content on their websites and this is likely to increase further into the near future so this needs to be factored in to your thinking if you own, run or manage a website.

Enabling AMP on your website can be tricky but once done correctly, it’s fairly easy to maintain and use on blog posts etc. For example, a number of WordPress plugins are available to help with layout, templates and amplifying content. As an example, you can view our previous post on this topic on your mobile device by clicking here – https://2cubed.ie/2018/06/the-importance-of-amp/amp/

At 2Cubed Web Design & Development, we can advise or help you with any of the needs above, helping you to enable AMP on your website. We offer a number of services to help you grow your online presence. Check out our list of services – https://2cubed.ie/services/

Contact us today for more information on the services we provide – Contact Us

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8 Great WordPress Plugins

wordpress plugins

If your site uses WordPress, you’re probably familiar with plugins. Plugins are there to make life easier, essentially. We’ve gone through some of the top plugins on WordPress and picked out 8 that you may want to consider for your site.

  • Woocommerce – Woocommerce powers over 40% of all eCommerce websites on the web. Powerful and easy to use, it allows you to manage products, orders, discount codes and much more. You can read more on Woocommerce here
  • Yoast SEO – Yoast is a plugin to help with SEO on your site. Yoast is a free plugin but the premium version offers more features for advanced SEO. See here for more information.
  • WP Rocket – A number of caching tools are available for WordPress sites and WP Rocket is one of the most popular. Caching helps to maximise site performance and improve speed. The free version offers limited features but a premium version with more advanced options is available. You can read more on WP Rocket here
  • Elementor – This page builder has become one of the more popular tools out there in the past year and the reviews are outstanding. This powerful page builder allows you to easily manage page content and includes both a free and premium version. See here for more.
  • Smush – This plugin is mainly used for image compression and resizing. Having multiple large images on your site will cause issues with speed and performance. Smush helps with this by automatically compressing images once uploaded and again comes with either a free or premium version. You can view the full list of features here
  • Slider Revolution  – Powering over 2.5 million websites, Slider Revolution allows you to add sliders, carousels and more. Currently there isn’t a free version but it is cheap to purchase and includes a good deal of functionality but the premium version gives access to many more templates and features. View a full list of features here
  • Sucuri  – This security plugin helps to flag any security issues or breaches on your website and alerts you if anything does happen. Generally, your website host will look after security but this added layer of protection gives you peace of mind. See here for more info 
  • Redirection – This plugin allows you to easily manage 301s, 404s and more which can help reduce errors and improve site ranking. This plugin can be a useful tool but used incorrectly it can cause some issues. Take a look at more features here 

These are just some of the tools you can use to improve your WordPress site. *Please be aware that installing and updating plugins on your website may cause some issues*

At 2Cubed Web Design & Development, we can assist you with any of the needs above, helping you decide on and install / updating plugins. We offer a number of services to help you grow your online presence. Check out our list of services – https://2cubed.ie/services/

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A Quick Guide to Technical SEO

In this post, we’ll look at a critical element of search engine optimisation; Technical SEO. This has become a fundamental and sometimes overlooked area of SEO but we’ll explain why it’s more important than ever below.

Technical SEO contains many topics we could dive in to, but by understanding the key elements, it should allow you to gain an understanding of what it is and best practices to follow. As you would have seen in or SEO Audit post, technical SEO was listed as a key element along with on-page and off-page optimisation.

So, what exactly does it mean? Essentially, the technical health of your site indicates how well Google and other search engines can crawl and index the information on your website. If they encounter any issues, these will be flagged as errors or warnings in Google Search Console.

By resolving these issues, you’ll ensure your site is in good standing from a technical sense and means that the site crawlers can index your site fully without any obstacles. Some of the common issues you’ll need to address are as follows:

  • 404 errors – nobody likes seeing these, especially soft 404s. You can manage 404s by implementing 301 redirects
  • 5XX errors – server errors or timeouts which are blocking access to pages
  • noindex issues – noindex is commonly used to block access to a page that you do not wish to be indexed (such as private or secure pages). If you submit a url in the sitemap but it includes a noindex tag then you’ll need to address this
  • blocked by robots.txt – another method to block access to a page. You can see more here – https://support.google.com/webmasters/
  • Mobile Usability – Google analyse each page and flag any anomalies that may cause a poor user experience on mobile. For example, if clickable elements are too close together, if a page is not fully mobile responsive, text is too small to read and so on. Keeping your site fully mobile responsive ensures a good user experience, decreased bounce rate and just an overall better experience for your website users.  

Most of the errors above can be viewed on the Index Coverage Status report within Google Search Console – https://support.google.com/webmasters/

This brief overview of technical SEO should hopefully give more understanding of the variables a search engine goes through in order to show your website on Google.

At 2Cubed Web Design & Development, we can assist you with any of the needs above, allowing you to ensure your website is in good technical standing. We offer a number of services to help you grow your online presence. Check out our list of services – https://2cubed.ie/services/

Contact us today for more information on the services we provide – Contact Us

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What is Structured Data?

As structured data becomes more important, you are likely to see the term more and more. So what exactly does it mean? And what does it mean for your website? We’ll explain in more detail below.

Google and other search engines are always working hard to understand the content on your website. By implementing structured data, you can ensure you give the search engines clear and explicit information, allowing more accurate and descriptive search results for the end user.

By doing this, your website visitors may see more rich and interactive results on the search page.

 

You can see more descriptions of these search results by clicking here – https://developers.google.com/search/docs/guides/search-gallery

Most of the major search engines combined to create a special project Schema.org. The Schema.org website gives more info on how this data is populated and show examples of these ‘schemas’ and how they should be used.

Why does this matter?

Structured Data is an important element of SEO nowadays. Any information you provide to Google in a clear and easy manner, means they gain a better understanding of who you are what your website is about and can only help to increase rankings.

At 2Cubed Web Design & Development, we can assist you with any of the needs above, allowing you to take advantage of structured data best practices. We offer a number of services to help you grow your online presence. Check out our list of services – https://2cubed.ie/services/

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5 Great Content Marketing Tips

5 Great Content Marketing Tips

As traditional marketing has become less effective in this modern digital age more and more have turned their focus towards content marketing for their marketing needs. Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing content that can not only attract your target audience but actively retain them which will mean the chances of customers turning into conversions on your website will greatly increase. Content marketing allows you to actively develop a relationship with both new and existing clients.

Here are 5 great content marketing tips to ensure that your content is the best it can be:

Create Great Content

Just simply creating lots of fresh content isn’t enough, you need to ensure it’s good relevant content. When it comes to content the approach of “Quality over Quantity” should always be taken. By having great content users will be happy which will create a positive user experience.

Understand your Target Audience

Before you start to write your content you should always first be clear in your mind of whom this content will be targeted at. By knowing the target demographic you are creating content for you will be able to tweak and tailor your content to best meet the needs of this market of readers which will ensure that they will find the content relevant and useful.

Social Sharing

When you have published some great content to your blog don’t sit back and relax! Now you need to ensure that your content gets maximum exposure. A great way of doing this is sharing your blog post on your social media channels such as facebook, twitter, Linkedin etc… It is also a smart move to enable social media sharing on your blog posts which will encourage readers to share your content. The more your post is then shared the more exposure and web traffic you will get.

Simple Language

Keep your content simple and easy to read! Don’t make your content too intelectual with big words that are going to be a chore to read and understand. Keep it simple, straightforward and to the point, that what users want and that’s the kind of content that they will appreciate.

Calls to Action

All great content should contain effective calls to action. Such as click here to read more, click here to share our post etc… By having these call to actions you will promote readers to further engage with and share your content which can lead to it being exposed to others who would not have seen it otherwise maximising your content exposure and website traction.

If you can incorporate these 5 content marketing tips into the future creation of your content then you should see an increase in your website’s level of success as a direct result.

To inquire about content marketing with 2Cubed please get in touch today!

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The link between Website Speed and User Experience

Website Speed & User Experience

There is an intrinsic link between Website Speed and User Experience. There is a direct correlation between website speed & user experience, when the website speed is fast, it can greatly contribute to your website delivering a positive user experience, likewise a slow or frustrating website speed can lead to your website delivering a very negative user experience.

Considering the fact that user experience is one of the main determining factors of a website’s success this in turn means that a huge focus should always be placed on ensuring that your website’s speed is optimised to perform as efficiently as possible.

Here are some key ways to ensure that your website’s speed is fast:

Effectively Optimising Images:

If the images on your website aren’t effectively optimized then they can cause your website speed to suffer greatly. The best way to ensure that your images are optimised correctly is to compress them. Image compression is when you reduce the size of an image file without reducing the quality of the image.

Reduce Redirects

Redirects are instructions that automatically take users to another location. It’s important to only have redirects when necessary as each and every redirect that you have on your website will affect your overall website speed. If you have any existing redirects that are no longer necessary then make sure to remove them to increase your website speed.

Removing / Deleting Old Plugins

If your website currently has plugins installed that have become redundant and/or are no longer active then you should remove them as that will help to make your website load faster. Plugins can be very helpful and provide a range of great functions but be sure to only have the plugins you truly need installed, otherwise the more you have the slower your website speed will be.

Ensuring that your website speed and performance is always efficient as possible is an ongoing battle and something that will have to be done regularly. However the time spent on this is justified as the better your website speed is the better your user experience will be and this in turn will mean that your website will perform all the better and experience more success.

To inquire about website design and user experience with 2Cubed please get in touch today!

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